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Everything Begins and Ends with Grace

Wed, 2017-08-09 07:46 -- Jocelyn Green

I have to ask. For those of you who have read both The Mark of the King and Free to Lean: Making Peace with Your Lopsided Life--did you catch that I used the lesson the character Marc-Paul learned in the novel in the last chapter of Free to Lean? "Everything begins and ends with grace." Without taking the time to unpack that statement right here, I'll just say that this concept of grace is the perfect fit in both my novel and in my nonfiction book. 

Grace is always our perfect fit. It's always in season. And there is never a time when I don't need it. 

If you're not familiar with Free to Lean, it's my book for women that basically says it's OK to not do it all. Our goal should not be balance, but to lean into the priorities God has given us for our particular season of life. (Read more about the book here.) The entire last chapter of Free to Lean is devoted to exploring grace, along with some myths that keep us from embracing it. I do hope you have a chance to read it yourself, but let me just share a snippet with you today, from Chapter Ten: 

Grace means it's not about what we can do, but what Christ has already done for us. 

Grace means we don't have to earn His love, strength, or power. he has already declared us worthy of these gifts--and it has nothing to do with our striving.

Grace means that when we fall short, all is not lost--because Jesus covers the distance between where we are and where we will someday be.

I have motivational mugs and T-shirts that tell me to "Keep Calm and Write On," but my favorite one is the one pictured above. Because lots of days, I don't need a pep talk that tells me to be productive. I need grace. We all do.

Below, I'd love for you to hear from my friend Susie Finkbeiner on this.

I love that so much. Whatever we do, it's not by our power, but God's. There is such freedom in that truth! (You can view more videos on my Free to Lean YouTube playlist here. More videos will be added to it as Discovery House finishes editing them.)

I want to leave you with a song by Sara Groves which I listened to over and over while I wrote Free to Lean. It relates so well, in fact, that I wanted to quote from the lyrics in the book. But alas, we were only granted permission for three years' time due to music copyright issues, so I'm just going to share it with you this way instead. (The video below is just audio, there's no real video component to it.) The song is called "I've Been Here Before," and it's from her Floodplain album. Listen closely to the chorus, and be encouraged.

About the Author: 

Jocelyn Green

Jocelyn Green is the award-winning author of more than a dozen books, including fiction and nonfiction. A former military wife herself, she offers encouragement and hope to military wives through her Faith Deployed books and The 5 Love Languages Military Edition, which she co-authored with best-selling author Dr. Gary Chapman. Her Heroines Behind the Lines Civil War novels, inspired by real heroines on America’s home front, are marked by their historical integrity and gritty inspiration. As a speaker, Jocelyn inspires faith and courage in her audiences. Jocelyn graduated from Taylor University in Upland, Indiana, with a B.A. in English, concentration in writing. She is an active member of the Christian Authors Network, the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, American Christian Fiction Writers, and the Military Writers Society of America. She loves Mexican food, Broadway musicals, Toblerone chocolate bars, the color red, and reading on her patio. Jocelyn lives with her husband Rob and two children in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Visit her at www.jocelyngreen.com.

Comments

Submitted by Rachel E. Watson on
Love this! Love Susie's video, your writing and the Sara Groves song. I've been a big fan of hers since I saw her in concert in GR probably 15 years ago.

Submitted by Jocelyn Green on
Thank you so much, Rachel! I'm glad you enjoyed the video and song! P.S. I've been a fan of yours since I met you in GR a few years ago, too. :) Sad I'll miss seeing you again in October. Hopefully in 2018 I can make it back to Breathe!

Submitted by Rachel E. Watson on
Aww, that's so nice of you to say that! I'm blushing. :) I really hope you can make it back in 2018, too. Good luck with your current project and I'm looking forward to reading your latest.

Submitted by Jocelyn Green on
Thank you!

Submitted by Paula Shreckhise on
Grace means it's not about what we can do, but what Christ has already done for us. Grace means we don't have to earn His love, strength, or power. he has already declared us worthy of these gifts--and it has nothing to do with our striving. Grace means that when we fall short, all is not lost--because Jesus covers the distance between where we are and where we will someday be. That was very eloquently put. It says it all! It is all Him! We can do nothing to earn His Grace!

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